No matter how old you are, trying on a pair of jeans and realizing they don’t fit you anymore is quite alarming and a cause for worry. This rather familiar situation arises for both men and women, young and old alike.

Yes, you all know that men and women differ in many ways, such as the form of their skeletal structure, the way their brains perceive certain circumstances and emotions and even in their social behaviour.

Nevertheless, contrary to the popular belief that men and women, both, put on a few kilos in the tummy while indulging in rich meals, consuming oily, junk food or munching on sugar-loaded treats, how weight gain occurs is also significantly different in men and women.

weight gain in men and women

The primary reason for this difference in weight gain processes is the presence of the hormone testosterone in men and estrogen in women. These hormones tend to influence how and wherein the body fat gets stored and the way it is assimilated in the tissues. Also, the amount of muscle mass is lower in women than in men, subsequently impacting the energy requirements as well.

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Added to this, external factors such as the type of diet, proper hydration and frequency of physical activity also play a key role in contributing to body mass. Read on, to understand some of the significant variations in weight gain in men and women. Also Read: Here’s How Much Water You Should Drink For Losing Weight

Five Prominent Differences In Weight Gain Amongst Men And Women:

1. Fat Metabolism In Body:

Metabolism refers to the biochemical process of utilizing fats stored in the body as well as those ingested in food, for energy needs. Numerous scientific studies have revealed that men burn more fat during exercise and even while at rest, while women have a moderately slower fat metabolism. This leads to women gaining weight faster than men, although proper dieting and exercise help maintain healthy body weight.

2. Storage Of Lipids In Tissues:

Upon ingestion of foods, the fats in them are processed and stored in the bodily tissues, for insulation and energy purposes. However, while in men, the lipid content is inherently accumulated in the region of the internal or visceral organs, as well as the abdomen, in women, lipid storage occurs mainly in subcutaneous tissues beneath the skin. Hence, fat often gets piled up in the areas of the hips and thighs in adult women.

3. Effect Of Reproductive Hormones:

Testosterone, the male hormone, performs vital functions such as adding bone density, strengthening muscle mass and optimal burning of excess fat tissue. Hence, if testosterone levels are normal in adult men and a balanced diet and regular workout are practiced, weight gain in the tummy significantly reduces. On the other hand, estrogen in women does help to maintain a healthy body mass index (BMI), but its levels fluctuate during pregnancy and menopause, causing more weight gain in women during these phases. Also Read: Post-Partum Weight Loss: 5 Easy Steps To Get Back In Shape

4. Variations In Muscle Mass:

Based on physiology, men have more muscle mass than women. This, in turn, promotes rapid absorption of fat in foods by the muscles in men, while in women some of the fat is incorporated in muscles and the rest gets redistributed to other tissues in the body. Hence, this affects the overall body shape, curvature and muscle power in men and women. With daily exercise and strength training, women can also work up their muscle mass and prevent excess weight gain in other parts of the body.

5. Diet And Eating Habits:

Researchers have found that women tend to be more watchful of their weight when compared to men. Women also acknowledge their additional weight gain and hence, discuss diet trends and weight loss techniques to tackle the same. As a result, they opt for healthy foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, dairy and lean meat while men choose heavy meat-based dishes to make up for their increased calorie needs.


Although men and women tend to put on a few pounds in different regions of their bodies, with hormones playing a chief role in redistribution of fat, a wholesome diet, routine brisk walks or workouts and steering clear of unhealthy, oily and sugary food options can help to maintain body weight and burn fat in an efficient manner.